Poultry in Motion

(“. . . it’s kind of a chicken(bleep) way to go about showing.”)

“I don’t ride this test because my horse isn’t good at ________.” I have heard competitors saying that. Haven’t you? In a sense I do appreciate that sentiment if your goal is an annual high score award which can be compromised by a couple of less successful outings. But from a larger perspective it’s kind of a chicken(bleep) way to go about showing. Honestly, I can’t think of anything in any of the tests at this point that are bad for your horse or that you shouldn’t be able to execute.

Skipping Second Level test 3 because you don’t like the serpentines or Third Level 2 because you don’t like renvers is missing the point of why they are included among the classical exercises. In short, if you cannot do them, you should be able to do them! If you avoid them, you are leaving a hole in your horse’s training that will come back to bite you later!

When you are filling out entry forms or looking over your scores on line, it’s easy to forget the Training Scale and the progressive development of the horse’s body and mind which the tests are designed to escort you through. I understand why you might postpone tackling a particular test until you feel your horse is ready. That’s fine. But at some point you owe it to him and yourself to confront the requirements of all of them.